Discussion: The Inclusion of Nurses in the Systems Development Life Cycle
In the media introduction to this module, it was suggested that you as a nurse have an important role in the Systems Development Life Cycle (SDLC). With a focus on patient care and outcomes, nurses may not always see themselves as contributors to the development of new systems. However, as you may have observed in your own experience, exclusion of nurse contributions when implementing systems can have dire consequences.
In this Discussion, you will consider the role you might play in systems development and the ramifications of not being an active participant in systems development.
· Review the steps of the Systems Development Life Cycle (SDLC) as presented in the Resources.
· Reflect on your own healthcare organization and consider any steps your healthcare organization goes through when purchasing and implementing a new health information technology system.
· Consider what a nurse might contribute to decisions made at each stage of the SDLC when planning for new health information technology.
1- A description of what you believe to be the consequences of a healthcare organization not involving nurses in each stage of the SDLC when purchasing and implementing a new health information technology system.
2- Provide specific examples of potential issues at each stage of the SDLC and explain how the inclusion of nurses may help address these issues.
3- Then, explain whether you had any input in the selection and planning of new health information technology systems in your nursing practice or healthcare organization and explain potential impacts of being included or not in the decision-making process. Be specific and provide examples.
The Systems Development Life Cycle (SDLC) is crucial for any successful implementation of new health information systems. The key steps in the process include planning, analysis, design, implementation, and maintenance (Laureate Education, 2019). All steps must be met for a successful outcome. In many situations, lack of nurse involvement in the process can hinder the likelihood of success (Laureate Education, 2019).
For success in developing new health information systems, it is important that nurses are involved in every step of the process. Lack of listening to nurses and lack of receiving feedback from nurses can have a negative impact on any program implementation (Weckman et al., 2009). For example, at my organization the management team decided to implement a new process of time stamping when pre-procedure was complete, in the pre op area. They did not involve the nurses in any step of the SDLC process, so management was met with great resistance and negative feedback regarding the new process of time stamping. Management was forced to reevaluate and gather feedback from nurses and had to adjust the process. Management would have saved a lot of time and resources involving the nurses in the process from the get-go.
A successful approach management could have used would be to involve the nurses at each stage of the SDLC. For example, management should have involved the nurses in the planning phase by sharing project goals and discussing the planned project. The nurses should have been involved in the analysis phase by performing an analysis, reflecting on current procedures involved in time stamping. Another step that the nurses should have been involved in was the design phase. The nurses should have had a chance to develop a successful model regarding time stamping and its process. The most important part of a nurse’s involvement in the process would be implementation. With the nurses at the bedside giving direct patient care and being an active member of the nursing process, this would be the most crucial phase in involving nurse thoughts and feedback. Management also should have involved the nurses in the maintenance phase. They could have done this by involving the nurses in any necessary changes or enhancements to aid in a smooth process of time stamping.
In conclusion, for any system implementation to be successful all stakeholders need to be involved (McGonigle & Mastrian, 2017). Especially the stakeholders that are directly being affected, such as nurses. If nurses were initially involved in the scenario mentioned earlier, there would have been a lot of resources and time saved.
Laureate Education 9Producer). (2018). Systems Implementation [Video file]. Baltimore, MD: Author.
McGonigle, D., & Mastrian, K.G. (2017). Nursing informatics and the foundation of Knowledge (4th ed.). Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.
Weekman, H., Janzen, S. (2009). The critical nature of early nurse involvement for introducing new technologies. The Online Journal of Issues in Nursing, 14(2). doi: 10.3912/OJIN.Vol1402Man02.